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Old 11-20-2011, 02:00 PM
 
Location: London, England
643 posts, read 980,421 times
Reputation: 160

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The MLS Cup Playoffs and the league's grand finale are getting new looks in 2012.

The MLS Cup final will no longer be a neutral-site game, according to a plan approved on Saturday by the league’s Board of Governors. Instead, the league’s championship match will be played at the home venue of the participating team with a higher regular-season point total.

That effectively brings an end to the system of rotating the MLS Cup final to different venues around the league, as MLS has done since its inaugural 1996 season.


The playoff format itself will also get a tweak. As in 2011, the playoff field will remain 10 teams. However, the top five teams in each conference will qualify for the postseason without wild card spots.

The No. 4 team in each conference will then host the No. 5 team in its conference in a single-elimination game for the right to face its respective conference’s top seed in the Conference Semifinals.

The Conference Championships will shift to two-leg series instead of a single game, as they have been since 2003.

Each club’s total matches will remain the same, at 34 regular-season matches, and the regular season will run from mid-March through October, as it has in recent years.

Here is how the conference-based schedule will work:

Western Conference clubs will play each other three times, totaling 24 matches. They will play four conference opponents twice at home and once away, and play the other four conference opponents twice away and once at home. The location arrangement will be reversed in 2013.

West clubs will complete their schedule by playing each of the 10 Eastern Conference clubs once. Five of matches will be at home and five will be on the road. Again, the arrangement will be reversed in 2013.

Due to the higher number of clubs in the Eastern Conference, things are a little different on that side. Each club will play a total of 25 conference matches.

Each East club will play seven of their conference opponents three times each (21 total games) and the remaining two conference opponents twice each (4 games).

To complete their full slate, East teams will then play the nine West teams once each. Those nine games will be split either five at home and four away or vice versa. The locations will be reversed in 2013.

The league says it plans to announce the full schedule earlier than they have in previous years.
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Old 11-20-2011, 10:19 PM
 
Location: Tejas
7,550 posts, read 16,383,531 times
Reputation: 5087
Quote:
The MLS Cup final will no longer be a neutral-site game, according to a plan approved on Saturday by the league’s Board of Governors. Instead, the league’s championship match will be played at the home venue of the participating team with a higher regular-season point total
That is stupid.
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Old 11-21-2011, 05:25 AM
 
Location: Belgium
1,173 posts, read 1,673,325 times
Reputation: 1413
What if they would simply create one old-fashioned national league without play-offs or anything. 18 teams, 34 games and the champion is the one that wins most games...
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Old 11-21-2011, 08:40 AM
 
Location: Tejas
7,550 posts, read 16,383,531 times
Reputation: 5087
That would be best. You will get the true MLS Champions then IMHO. None of this supports shield or whatever crap they call it for having the most points.

Best option IMHO would be to have one league and whoever wins wins to become MLS Champions. Now if they want to have an MLS Cup after that that would be OK too.
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Old 11-21-2011, 10:51 AM
 
Location: London, England
643 posts, read 980,421 times
Reputation: 160
Yeah but they wont have one league without playoffs in order to give teams a more equal chance of winning and to try improve the popularity of the game.
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Old 11-21-2011, 01:56 PM
 
Location: Kansas City, MO
5,763 posts, read 9,743,505 times
Reputation: 2806
Quote:
Originally Posted by Avondrood View Post
What if they would simply create one old-fashioned national league without play-offs or anything. 18 teams, 34 games and the champion is the one that wins most games...

It will not happen as long as the current leaders of MLS around. They have said it a million times.

Playoffs are a part of American sports culture. Removing them would be a huge, huge mistake.
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Old 11-21-2011, 03:13 PM
 
Location: Scotland
7,972 posts, read 10,087,185 times
Reputation: 4092
Or a huge benefit!
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Old 11-21-2011, 04:14 PM
 
Location: Tejas
7,550 posts, read 16,383,531 times
Reputation: 5087
How would it be a huge mistake ? Americans are happy with every other league in the world being an actual league.

Why not have a league and whoever wins the league is the MLS Champions. Then if they want to do some other crap playoff afterwards take the top 8 teams and do an MLS Cup Playoff if they want.
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Old 11-21-2011, 05:10 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
1,451 posts, read 1,424,542 times
Reputation: 648
I'm afraid most 'mericans want a playoffs that crowns the champs...all of the major sports have this. It's just a part of American sports at this point.
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Old 11-21-2011, 05:57 PM
 
Location: Scotland
7,972 posts, read 10,087,185 times
Reputation: 4092
Sports are all different though, can Americans not differentiate between them all or something? Not all sports need to stick to the same model.
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